US ARMY NATICK SOLDIER CENTER: The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

In-Theatre Microclimate Cooling
Walter Teal (508) 233-6096 walter.teal@natick.army.mil Bruce Cadarette (508) 233-4429 Bruce.Cadarette@us.army.mil Brad Laprise (508) 233-5440 brad.laprise@natick.army.mil

Microclimate Cooling Concepts

Passive System

Air System

Liquid System
2

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

Microclimate Cooling Requirements
Guidelines •There is not one cooling system that will satisfy the needs of all users all of the time •Need to understand the technical, operational, logistical implications/trade-offs of a system/technology

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

3

Microclimate Cooling Requirements (cont.)
Parameters to identify/define/consider: •Weight (fixed/variable) •Duration/Mission Length (time between replacement of consumables) •Size •Logistics (re-supply of batteries, cooling packs, filters, etc.) •Integration/compatibility with Clothing and Individual Equipment (CIE) •Tethered vs. non-tethered (mobility vs. carried weight trade-off) •Support equipment available (battery chargers, freezers, etc.) •Noise •Cooling Garment configuration (shirt, vest, trousers, cap, etc.)

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

4

Overview of Cooling Systems
Heat Mitigation Strategy
Ventilation vest with wicking tee shirt Blower add-on to ventilation vest Med-Eng Body Cooling System

Cooling Level

Cooling Duration

System weight (carried by Soldier)
A few ounces

Support Required

Minimal (environment dependent) Low (environment dependent) High

Infinite

None

4 hours

< 5 pounds

Battery replacement every 4 hours Ice bottle change every hour: replace battery every 2.5 hours Ice change every 3060 minutes; replace battery every 4 hours Vehicle power: requires AW microclimate cooling unit mounted on vehicle

45 minutes

8 pounds

Personal Ice Cooling System (PICS)

High

30-60 minutes

11 pounds

Air Warrior Microclimate Cooling System

High

Infinite

2 pounds

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

5

Overview of Cooling Systems (cont.)

Heat Mitigation Strategy
Steele Vest (ice pack cooling) Armored Vehicle Microclimate Cooling System

Cooling Level

Cooling Duration

System weight (carried by Soldier)
11 pounds

Support Required

Moderate

1.5 to 2 hours

Ice packs

Moderate

Infinite

2 pounds

Vehicle power/air conditioning system: requires Flow Control Assembly

Cooling Levels

Minimal (comfort) = < 50 Watts Low = 50-100 Watts Moderate = 100-175 Watts High = 175-250 Watts
6

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

Body Ventilation System (BVS)
• Provides ambient air active ventilation capability to Soldiers in warm environments • Sweat evaporation between DCU/ACU and IBA; integrated with MOLLE • CRADA with Global Secure Safety (GSS) • “Cooling” capability dependent on ambient conditions (best between 85 & 100° in dry F air) • BVS consists of – Ventilation Unit (VU)/Battery – 3.3 lbs – 8 hours duration on lithium ion battery – Air Distribution Garment (ADG) – 1.0 lb • ~ $800

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

7

Commercial Off the Shelf Med-Eng PC230D
• • • • • • • Liquid circulating/ice based system Tube garment 2 liter ice bottle ~1 hour cooling between bottle changes ~2.5 hours operation on battery charge 8 pounds Logistics • Requires spare 2 liter bottles and freezer(s) to recharge them • Spare batteries/rechargers • ~$1500 ea • Manufacturer (Med-Eng Systems) willing to work with customers to make modifications to system

Used in ISR at BAMC

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

8

Personal Ice Cooling System (PICS)
A battery powered mini pump circulates chilled water between the NBC sealed ice bag and a tube garment to remove metabolic heat from the body. •30-60 minute ice change-out •Four hour battery change-out •Three alkaline D-cell batteries •Weight: 11 pounds •Slightly bulkier and heavier than Med-Eng PC230D system

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

9

Air Warrior Microclimate Cooling System
• Chilled liquid circulated to garment to cool aircrew • Autonomous cooler takes heat from the fluid rejects heat to warm (ambient) air • Current Applications: UH-60A/L, M9 ACE, CH-47D, OH-58D • As of Jan 07, 843 aircraft received the MCS kits • Unlimited cooling duration as long as power is available • High level of cooling • Could be used in hospital setting in tethered mode

Microclimate Cooling Unit (MCU)

Microclimate Cooling Garment (MCG)

MCS Hose Assembly
US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow
10

Commercial Off the Shelf Steele Vest - Phase Change
Passive Phase Change Material (PCM) Cooling Products: Materials that change phase from a solid to liquid to provide cooling •Ice or paraffins are most common •No moving parts •Multiple configurations (vest, hat, neck wrap) •Requires freezer/refrigerator to recharge PCM •Requires cooler to transport PCM •Outer clothing may have to be opened/removed to replace PCM •Cooling rate decreases over time •Cooling rate/duration dependent on type and amount of PCM •Bulky •~$9-$350
US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow
11

Commercial Off the Shelf Microclimate Cooling Systems
Compressed Air Products: Air distribution garment connected to a compressed air source •User is tethered; system is not autonomous •Pass-through device may be required in outer clothing to accommodate hose •Compressed air source required •Cooling rate constant over time •Some products use vortex tubes to refrigerate air •Cool air may blow on patients •~$100-$260

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

12

Microclimate Cooling
General Observations/Conclusion •Many commercial Microclimate Cooling products available •Evaporative systems provide minimal cooling under protective clothing •Ice based Passive systems provide more cooling than paraffin systems on a per weight basis •Active liquid systems provide consistent cooling, but require tether or large logistical support •All have technical, logistical, cost, and operational trade-offs •Cannot identify the “best” product without understanding specific user needs/requirements

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

13

Microclimate Cooling POCs
Please contact us if you have any questions on microclimate cooling systems:
U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine (USARIEM): Bruce Cadarette (508) 233-4429 Bruce.Cadarette@us.army.mil U.S. Army Natick Research Development and Engineering Center Brad Laprise (508) 233-5440 brad.laprise@natick.army.mil Walter Teal (508) 233-6096 walter.teal@natick.army.mil

US ARMY RDECOM NATICK SOLDIER CENTER The Science Behind the Warrior: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

14